A lasting memorial to Bute football coach Jim Ross, who introduced hundreds of the island’s young people to the magic of ‘the beautiful game’ over more than 30 years, was unveiled on Sunday.
The memorial, a simple wall flanked by two trees, both features and reflects one of Jim’s favourite sayings, ‘A wall and a ball is your best friend’, and was unveiled by his daughters Jacqui and Fiona and his grandchildren, Kames and Evie.
Among those who paid tribute to Jim, who died aged 76 in March of this year, were Dundee midfielder Jim McAlister and local runner Calum MacPhail, both pupils at Jim’s coaching classes in their younger days, and who both contributed towards the funding of the memorial - Jim by organising a tournament at Rothesay Golf Club, along with two other Jim Ross pupils, Cemal Hassan and Ian Simpson, in October, and Calum through a sponsored 31.2 mile run from Wemyss Bay to Glasgow.
Jim McAlister said: “You would struggle to put into words the effect this wonderful man had on so many people from so many walks of life.
“I couldn’t think of a better place to put this memorial, as the memories Jim gave us on this park where we are stood today are memories that will live with us for the rest of our days.”